EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Utilities Continue Plans to Accelerate Phase-Out of Coal-Fired Generation

Proposals to accelerate the phase-out of coal-fired generation appear more prominently in long-term resource plans of U.S. electric utilities, reflecting the growing shift to renewable energy. The transition from coal continues to be driven by state clean energy mandates, emissions reduction goals, low natural gas prices, and increased availability of low-cost renewables and storage resources.

Exelon Plans to Close Two Nuclear Plants in Illinois Citing Revenue Shortfalls

Exelon Generation on Aug. 26 announced that it plans to retire two nuclear plants in Illinois with a capacity of more than 4.1 gigawatts as they face revenue shortfalls due to falling energy prices and market rules that allow fossil fuel generators to underbid carbon-free resources in PJM Interconnection LLC’s capacity auction. The announcement follows…...

Florida Regulator Approves Duke’s Decommissioning Plan for Crystal River Nuclear Power Plant

The Florida Public Service Commission on Aug. 18 approved Duke Energy Florida LLC’s plan to decommission the Crystal River Nuclear Plant by 2038. This ceasing of operations in the nuclear space comes 36 years earlier than initially planned, and is meant to protect Duke’s customers from potential financial, environmental, and regulatory risks. The Duke Energy…...

U.S. Energy Department Announces $21 Million for Fusion Energy Research

The U.S. Energy Department on Aug. 19 announced a plan to award $21 million to support artificial intelligence and machine learning research on fusion energy for a duration of three years. The awards are expected to improve operational efficiencies with automated data analysis workflows and real-time control algorithms at the Office of Science. The department…...

PSEG Plans to Sell Nearly 6.8 Gigawatts of Fossil Fuel Power Plants, Retain Nuclear Generation

Public Service Enterprise Group is exploring alternatives to 6,750 megawatts of fossil generation in New Jersey, Connecticut, New York and Maryland, and its 467-megawatt Solar Source portfolio across 14 states, according to a July 31 press release. The New Jersey utility intends to retain its existing nuclear fleet, in order to help the state achieve…...

EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Ohio Nuclear Bailout Scandal Stirs Up Questions Over Ratepayer Subsidies for Aging Power Plants

The debate over ratepayer subsidies for struggling nuclear power plants has resurfaced, following a racketeering investigation related to a controversial Ohio law, which created a $1 billion bailout for FirstEnergy Corp. last year. The economic troubles of the embroiled industry come to the fore even as states such as New Jersey and Illinois evaluate plans to opt out of the regional capacity market in response to reforms that expanded the minimum offer price rule to subsidized resources.

U.S. Development Bank Ends Ban on Financing Nuclear Power Projects

The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation updated its nuclear energy policy to end a ban on financing nuclear projects, according to a July 23 news release. The agency said that the policy change recognizes the energy needs of developing nations, as well as novel technologies such as modular reactors and microreactors that could be impactful…...

Court Approves Santee Cooper’s $520 Million Ratepayer Settlement Over Failed Nuclear Project

The South Carolina Court of Common Pleas Thirteenth Judicial Circuit on July 21 approved a $520 million settlement to refund customers of state-owned Santee Cooper for costs incurred toward the construction of the abandoned VC Summer nuclear power project. The deal includes a four-year rate freeze by the utility, constituting an additional $510 million benefit…...

U.S. Summer Electricity Demand Projected to Hit Decade Low: EIA

U.S. summer electricity demand, from June through August, is expected to total 998 billion kilowatthours, a 5 percent drop compared to 2019 and the lowest value since 2009, according to a June 10 report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Retail electricity sales in the commercial and industrial sectors are expected to decline 12 percent…...

U.S. Energy Department Launches $230 Million Initiative to Support Advanced Nuclear Reactors

The U.S. Energy Department on May 14 announced the launch of the Advanced Reactor Demonstration Program, which will provide $160 million initial funding for two reactors to be operational in the next five to seven years. The program will establish cost-shared partnerships  with U.S. industry to expedite the demonstration of advanced nuclear reactors. The funding…...

U.S. Energy Department Unveils Strategy to Restore Nuclear Energy Leadership

The U.S. Energy Department on April 23 released a report by the Nuclear Fuel Working Group, which outlines a strategy for the U.S. to regain its global leadership in nuclear energy and technology. The report recommends potential actions to enhance the positive attributes of nuclear power, restore the viability of the nuclear-fuel cycle, strengthen U.S…....

U.S. Senators Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Advance Innovative Energy Technologies

Senators Lisa Murkowski, a Republican representing Alaska, and Joe Manchin, a Democrat representing West Virginia, unveiled a bipartisan legislative package on Feb. 27 that compiles more than 50 energy-related measures reported by the Energy and Natural Resources Committee last year. The comprehensive bill supports innovative energy technologies covering a range of topics including energy efficiency,…